“Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are My disciples,”
John 13:35 (NLT).
“For since our friendship with God was restored by the death of his Son while we were still his enemies, we will certainly be saved through the life of his Son,” Romans 5:10 (NLT).
Though it’s true that many countries around the world have laws in place prohibiting Christian missionaries, the “welcome mat” to the world’s future leaders cannot be stopped!
Our university and college doors are wide open, accepting more than 1.3 million of the world’s best and brightest students, from every nation. These students, scholars and researchers are tomorrow’s leaders.
International students are preparing for critical roles in the development of their countries, representing nearly every major field of study, including health, law, government, sciences, business, computer science and education. These men and women will soon be inheriting leadership around the world! As they pursue their studies here in the United States, they are looking for someone like you, a caring American friend! Often, these friendships last much longer—many turning into lifelong friendships! More importantly, these relationships often serve as a platform to share the love of Jesus Christ.
One of our ministry volunteers writes,
“When we meet new international students, we never know how our meeting will change their lives or our own. Many in the ministry can describe friendships with students that have become lifelong. For three years Tony, a Chinese neurosurgeon, honed his skills at the university, and we became great friends. We practiced pronouncing nouns and verbs together in hospital cafes. We caught fish from a canoe on warm summer evenings. We huddled in deer stands trying to keep warm on crisp mornings. We worked our way through Mark’s gospel, and wondered why a man wielding God-like powers allowed himself to be killed by mere mortals. And we spent a lot of hours together just working through life’s challenges. Imagine how I felt when Tony invited me to join him and his fiancée Reagan in China to be a part of their wedding. He said that he wanted to pay for the flight. ‘Please don’t worry about the money,’ he said, ‘I can earn the money back, but I could not get another valuable friend like you.’ When Tony left the States, I gave him a big bear hug. I thought it was the last time I’d see him. Now, I am so excited at the thought of embracing my friend once more and talking again about the One who surely summoned him as the Greater friend.”
What a blessing when our friendships become this important. We know that the impressions we’ve made on our friends are due to the One whose love abides in us. And these friendships open the door for us to share with them their Forever Friend.
“Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tender-hearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience… Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony,” Colossians 3:12, 14 (NLT).
For More Information
Through ISI’s Churches Reaching Nations initiative, we can come alongside you and your church, helping you effectively fulfill the Great Commission without ever leaving the US, or even your own community. The impact and influence you have will reach nations and world leaders in the countries most closed to the Gospel message! Learn more here.